Sapiential Books

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Sapiential Books or Books of Wisdom is a term used in biblical studies to refer to a subset of the books of the Jewish Bible in the Septuagint version. There are seven of these books, namely the books of Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, the Book of Wisdom, the Song of Songs (Song of Solomon), and Sirach. Not all the Psalms are usually regarded as belonging to the Wisdom tradition.

In Judaism, the Books of Wisdom are regarded as part of the Ketuvim or "Writings". In Christianity, Job, Psalms, Proverbs and Ecclesiastes are included in the Old Testament by all traditions, while Wisdom, Song of Songs and Sirach are regarded in some traditions as deuterocanonical.

Sapiential books are in the broad tradition of wisdom literature that was found widely in the Ancient Near East, and includes writings from many religions other than Judaism.


  • Anderson, B. W. (1988). The living world of the Old Testament, 4th Edition. Harlow: Longman. pp. 570ff.